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Thread: Suction Leak causing water loss?

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    Join Date
    Jul 2015
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    Suction Leak causing water loss?

    Alright, I can't take much action yet, b/c we're in the middle of a drain/refill due to high CYA (110) - thank you dichlor. I'm all-in with TFP, now, so just liquid chlorine for us now! But I wanted to put this out there so I can have a plan of attack as soon as the pool is full again.

    We've been through war with this pool so far this year. A tree fell on it, the wiring to the pump shorted out, the waste valve leaked like crazy when filtering, and there was a leak in the pressure side return lines causing us to lose a ton of water when the pump was running. All that's taken care of now. We were running the pump 24/7 once the wiring and leaks were fixed to clear an algae bloom, with no water loss. Now, when we turn the pump off, we're noticing a water loss. A couple of inches over the course of a few rainy days.

    There is air in the pump. We have to bleed the filter every few minutes. There are air bubbles coming out of the return line when the pump is on. So definitely suction leak, right? I was greatly encouraged to read that the odds of it being an underground leak are slim. But we don't see water coming out of any of the pipes or dripping down the equipment. We only lose water when the pump is not running now. Where is the water going? Should I dig down to the base of the pipe coming out of the ground to the pump to see if the ground is wet?

    If we didn't have a friend's going away party scheduled for next Sunday, we probably would've just put a cover back on by now and waited till next year, lol...

    Thanks!
    Lexie
    50 yr old in-ground plaster pool
    15'x40' 3ft to 9ft
    22000 gallons - we think
    1hp jacuzzi pump and sherlock cartridge filter
    Taylor K-2005 test kit

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    Texas Splash's Avatar
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    Re: Suction Leak causing water loss?

    Sorry to hear about your troubles Lexie. However you pretty-much nailed it all on the head. All the symptoms you mention describe a suction-side leak. Keep in mind that with a suction leak above ground, you typically won't see a water leak other than possibly a quick spurt of water from a seal or bad joint when the pump is first turned-off. So when the system is off, yes, that's when there could be a possibility of a leak underground.

    Do you have both main drains and skimmers? Is there any way for you to isolate flow from one or the other to try and isolate which pipe may be at fault? Sometimes that helps. I suspect you've already exhausted this PAGE, but just in case there it is again.

    Lets us know more about your plumbing if you can, see if that page helps you, at all, and we'll let others reply to see if we've missed anything else.
    Pat (a.k.a. Texas Splash) ~ My Pool: Viking Fiberglass; 17,888 Gal; Waterway Supreme 2-sp/2-hp pump; Hayward Ctg filter; TF-100 w/ Speed Stir
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    duraleigh's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
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    Re: Suction Leak causing water loss?

    The air in the filter and the water leaking are entirely separate. The air in the filter is cause by a suction side leak as you suspect. did you read the article in Pool School? It may help.

    I suggest you solve that leak first and then go after the water loss leak.
    Dave S.
    42k vinyl and concrete pool, 1.5hp pump, 140gpm filter
    TFTestkits , PoolMath , Pool School

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    Join Date
    Jul 2015
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    Re: Suction Leak causing water loss?

    Quote Originally Posted by Texas Splash View Post
    Do you have both main drains and skimmers? Is there any way for you to isolate flow from one or the other to try and isolate which pipe may be at fault? Sometimes that helps. I suspect you've already exhausted this PAGE, but just in case there it is again.
    We only have one skimmer...the old owner cemented over the main drain years ago when he thought it was leaking. So one line from the skimmer to the pump. I did look over that page a bunch. If the water loss and the air aren't related, then my suspicions are the crazy plumbing job my FIL did when hooking up the filter we bought last year. Hubby thinks it might be one of the O rings on the pump itself.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by duraleigh View Post
    The air in the filter and the water leaking are entirely separate. The air in the filter is cause by a suction side leak as you suspect. did you read the article in Pool School? It may help.

    I suggest you solve that leak first and then go after the water loss leak.
    Thanks! The other thing we were thinking is that we got a crack in the suction-side line when the tree fell. We found an amazing gel that sealed up a pressure-side leak in the line to the return, but we have no way to backwash the lines, and the gel instructions say that you have to do that with a suction-side leak or the gel won't fill up the crack and seal it properly.
    50 yr old in-ground plaster pool
    15'x40' 3ft to 9ft
    22000 gallons - we think
    1hp jacuzzi pump and sherlock cartridge filter
    Taylor K-2005 test kit

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